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The internet is different in the EU

One of the interesting things about moving to the EU is experiencing the internet where GDPR is a thing. We get asked permission for everything. Including if we want shopping cart updates.

Image of an email capture page that says "To continue, please enter your email address. We'll only use this to update you on your order, unless you also opt in to hear about our exciting offers and new ranges." The link also has a checkbox that says "If you leave us without ordering, we'll email you a reminder of what's in your basket. Tick the box to opt out."

On the email space, though, we’ve been visiting various home shows as we look at options and furniture for our new house. Part of it has involved giving email addresses to various groups in exchange for tickets. I’ve been pleasantly surprised at how I get the mail I expect related to those events and that address hasn’t leaked to all and sundry.

Contrast this with addresses I’ve shared with US companies, and then get bombarded with mail from all of them and their affiliates and anyone who could beg, borrow or steal my email address. It is phenomenally different. It also means I am much, much more likely to give local companies my email address. They don’t misuse it! What magic is this?

One of the very frustrating pieces is how many American News outlets refuse to even show anything to us.

A friend even commented something similar over on FB. Just how many major US news outlets can’t be bothered to do anything but block anyone coming in from the EU. I figure it’s mostly laziness, but it’s always possible they’re doing nefarious things with tracking and just are that afraid they can’t comply with the law.

Not that GDPR is that enforced. In fact, we were at a digital summit a few weeks ago talking about how digital attacks are rocking the very foundations of democracy. One of the panelists even said, “GDPR. It’s a great idea, someone should really try it someday.”

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